Academic journal article Journal of Applied Management and Entrepreneurship

Experiencing International Business and Management: Exercises, Projects, and Cases

Academic journal article Journal of Applied Management and Entrepreneurship

Experiencing International Business and Management: Exercises, Projects, and Cases

Article excerpt

Experiencing International Business and Management: Exercises, Projects, and Cases Betty Jane Punnett M.E. Sharpe Inc. (2005) 150 pages, Softcover, $29.95

Reviewed by: Elizabeth Danon-Leva, Nova Southeastern University

While both the concepts and the actions of international business and management have always existed, it appears there are topics that are being more identified and discussed in the 21SI century. Perhaps this has to do with the unprecedented internationalization and growth businesses are experiencing worldwide. As observed by Betty Jane Punnett, universities are integrating these topics more into their curricula. Furthermore, emphasis on what is international and the relationship to business is taking precedence. Teaching these two topics conceptually can be somewhat straightforward, yet offering practitioners and students alike the ability to obtain a hands-on experience to these concepts is challenging. As Punnett describes in her book, there exists many different approaches on how to teach any subject: lectures, readings, research, simulations, exercises, or a case study. The challenge is finding the right combination or blend of teaching approaches that will be effective and not only teach the theory but also provide a knowledge that can be applied and utilized in the real business world. To this, the book complements any international business or international management textbook and course; this book can also be used by practitioners.

Initially, Punnett sets out to discuss the value of experiential learning that is the method of choice in teaching these subjects. Mentioned briefly are KoIb's (1984) four modes of learning process that individuals possess: concrete experience, reflective observation, abstract conceptualization, and active experimentation. Since individuals have different learning styles and sometimes experience any combination of these modes at different times, the challenge becomes what to use effectively in a classroom setting that can translate into a hands-on learning experience. Punnett further delineates the benefits of hands-on learning and what to expect. For some individuals this style of learning can be difficult, feel uncomfortable, and make you think that one is not learning.

In the second part, Punnett provides a general overview of international business management. In this overview, the book presents a historical framework, the importance of international skills, the motivations to go international, entry forms into international locations, the role and importance of culture in international business, concluding with the stages of organizational development in the quest to go international.

Punnett describes the evolution of international business since World War II to present days. This historical overview is divided into four phases, using the term "actors" by Robinson (1981) to describe the major participants, the environment and focus, characteristic of each of the four phases. Consequently, the need for international skills and the ability to deal with the complexities international business presents is critical and a major component of success. …

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